Friday, March 15
WAM Theatre and Sisters for Peace present:
Screening: Half The Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide
Community discussion to follow with Kristen van Ginhoven and Caroline Wheeler
The Panel will include Janis Broderick, Maia Conty, Shirley Edgarton, Jeanet Ingalls, Bryan Nurnberger, and Ananda Timpany. Special music performance by Lizzie West.
Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center, 7–9:30 p.m.
Sponsored by McTeigue & McClellend and Sisters for Peace

This powerful documentary, inspired by Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn’s best-selling book, introduces women and girls from all over the world who are living under some of the most difficult circumstances imaginable . . . and fighting bravely to change them. The film reflects viable and sustainable options for empowerment and offers a blueprint for transformation. Through these stories, Kristof and WuDunn help us see that the key to economic progress lies in unleashing women’s potential. They make clear how so many people have helped to do just that, and how we can each do our part. Change is possible, and we can be part of the solution.

The film will be followed by a community discussion exploring effective actions and agents of change for women and girls in our own community and beyond.  The panel will be moderated by Kristen van Ginhoven of WAM Theatre and will include Janis Broderick of Elizabeth Freeman Center and The Berkshire County Commission on the Status of Women, Maia Conty from AIER’s Women’s Financial Empowerment Series, Shirley Edgarton from Rite of Passage for Girls program and the Women of Color Giving Circle, Jeanet Ingalls from Shout Out Loud Productions, Bryan Nurnberger from Simply Smiles and Ananda Timpany from Railroad Street Youth Project.

There will also be a special performance during the evening, featuring Lizzie West, local singer songwriter. Lizzie has toured at length and has had her music in films, TV, and on the radio. Entertainment Weekly called her a “visionary troubadour.” She performs with her husband Baba Buffalo, a seasoned player of a most magical music sound.

Inspired by the book Half the Sky, WAM Theatre was founded in 2009 by Kristen van Ginhoven and Leigh Strimbeck. WAM’s philanthropic mission is twofold: first, producing theatrical events for everyone, with a focus on women theater artists and/or stories of women and girls; second, to donate a portion of the proceeds from those events to organizations that benefit women and girls. WAM has donated over $7,000 to its beneficiaries.


Like many who have read Half the Sky, Sisters for Peace founder Caroline Wheeler was compelled to engage others to get involved and to work together to help empower women and girls around the world. In just over a year, Sisters for Peace has rallied to do volunteer work and has given over $8,000 to local and global organizations. Sisters for Peace is an entirely volunteer organization, and every dollar donated goes directly to the NGOs that work to empower women and girls. It doesn’t take an extensive network of partners and investors to start making a difference.